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Using 2D images in Bryce 5

Author: SMtechgirl

Tools Needed

  • Bryce 5
  • A 2D image
  • Graphics software


In the picture a 2D image was used to add an object to the scene, can you guess which one it is? Bryce allows you to use 2D images in your 3D scene. It does a pretty good job of rendering the image so that it looks like a 3D object.


Step 1 - Getting a 2D image


The most important part of using 2D images in bryce begins with your choice of the picture. This is a picture of a horse figurine. I chose it because you can clearly see the leg muscles and this picture is bright without too many shadows with a nice color. The picture should have a white background. Now you should crop/eliminate any unnecessary white space around the subject in the picture. I try to keep the size below under 700 X 700 pixels.

Step 2 - Making your image negative


Now open your picture in your favorite graphics program and set the picture to negative image and then fill in the pale white areas until they look pure white. This white color will help to make your image appear more vivid when blended in Bryce. Create a folder for your project and save both the original picture and the negative picture in that folder.

Step 3 - Adding your pictures to Bryce5


Now open Bryce and set up your scene as you wish. When you are ready to add the 2D image press the add 2D image icon in the top menu.


Pressing the 2D image icon immediatetly opens a picture dialog box. We are now going to load our picture in the first of the three boxes. Click on one of the tiny squares or click on the word “load”. This will open up the file dialog box.


On your hard drive, find the picture with the white background and highlight it then press “open”.

Step 4 - Blending your 2D pictures


Your picture is loaded into the picture box. So far so good. Now move to the second box. Click on the word “load”. This will open a file box. Look for the picture with the black background, highlight it and press “open”.


Now all three boxes have a picture in it. The last box is the result of combining box one and box two. Notice that your image is there and the background in transparent. Press the checkmark to return to the scene.

Step 5 - Adding the 2D image to your scene


Your image will not be visible in the main scene but you will be able to see it in the preview box in the top left of your screen. A hollow bounding box will be visible in the scene. This means that your 2D image is still highlighted. While it is still highlighted press the M key to enter the materials room.


Play with the diffusion and ambience settings to get a rich look. Use the preview window at the top left to view your work. When done, press the check mark in the bottom right corner of the box to return to the scene.


Sometimes, depending on the color of the image and the location of light thoughout the scene, the image can appear “see-through”. A neat trick I use to fix this is to copy the 2D image onto itself. Highlight the 2D image, go to the “edit” menu and press “copy” then immediately press “paste”. This places a copy of the 2D image right behind the original. Sometimes I decrease the ambience of the 2nd copy of the image to give it a rich look. Now you are ready to render your scene.

Good luck from Sandra @ and